TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) — Florida State, which has won a season-high three consecutive games, plays host to Florida in the Sunshine Showdown at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee on Tuesday, December 30 at 7:00 p.m. The meeting between the Seminoles and the Gators marks the 38th consecutive season these two teams have met at least once – every year since the 1978-79 season. Florida State and Florida, which meet in every sport the two schools sponsor annually, are separated by a mere 150 miles and a 2.5 hour drive from the Panhandle of Florida to Central Florida. Florida State has a 6-2 record in its last eight games and is 4-2 in the month of December as it prepares for its game against the Gators. Following Tuesday’s game against Florida, the Seminoles travel to play at Mississippi State on Friday, January 2, 2015 at 8:00 p.m. (ET) before continuing ACC play in earnest as they play host to Virginia Tech on January 6. Florida State’s game against the Hokies begins a string of 17 consecutive ACC games that will take the Seminoles to the end of the regular season and into the 62nd Annual ACC Tournament in Greensboro, N.C.
FLORIDA STATE VS. FLORIDA – A SERIES HISTORY
Florida State will play host to in-state rival Florida on December 30, 2014. The game marks the 66th meeting of the two teams, a series that dates back to 1951. Last season, the Seminoles lost a down-to-the-wire game by a 67-66 margin in Gainesville on November 29, 2013. Florida State trails the series but won three consecutive games from 2006-2008 including a 70-66 upset of the reigning national champion Gators at the Donald L. Tucker Center on December 3, 2006.
BRANDON DEVELOPING INTO SEMINOLES’ LEADER
Junior Montay Brandon enters Tuesday’s game against Florida as the Seminoles’ leader in scoring (career-high 13.9 ppg), steals (career-high 1.3 spg) and minutes played (career-high 33.4 mpg) and is ranked second on the team in assists (career-high 1.8 apg). He has scored in double figures in eight of Florida State’s 12 games, has led the team in scoring in four of the last five games and is averaging 16.6 points per game since scoring 23 against UCF on December 6. Brandon scored his career-high of 24 points in the Seminoles’ victory over North Florida on December 17.
BRANDON IN THE ACC STATISTICS
Junior Montay Brandon enters Tuesday’s game against Florida as the only player in the ACC who leads his team in scoring (career-high 13.9 ppg), rebounding (career-high 5.4 rebounds per game) and steals (career-high 1.3 steals per game). He is one of only five players in the ACC who leads his team in scoring and rebounding. Brandon is joined by Jahlil Okafor of Duke (tied for third in steals amongst his teammates), Jaron Blossomgame of Clemson (third in steals), Michael Young of Pitt (second in steals) and Rakeem Christmas of Syracuse (fifth in steals) as ACC players who lead their teams in scoring and rebounding.
SEMINOLES IN A SUNSHINE STATE OF MIND
Florida State enters Tuesday’s game against Florida looking to continue its winning streak against schools from the state of Florida. Already this season, the Seminoles have defeated UCF (December 6, 96-73), UNF (December 17, 93-77), USF (December 20, 75-62) and Stetson (December 22, 63-59). In addition to its game against Florida on Tuesday, the Seminoles are scheduled to face Miami (Fla.) twice in ACC play (February 1 in Tallahassee and February 25 in Coral Gables).
LOOK FOR FLORIDA STATE TO…
…Defeat Florida and win its third game in the last five meetings at home against Florida. The Seminoles topped the Gators at home on December 3, 2006 (55-51) and on December 3, 2008 (57-55);
…Defeat Florida and break a five-game losing streak against the Gators. Florida has defeated the Seminoles in each of the last five games in the series dating back to a 68-52 Gator win on November 24, 2009;
…Defeat Florida and break a two-game losing streak at home against the Gators. Florida has defeated the Seminoles in the last two meetings at the Donald L. Tucker Center;
…Defeat Florida and win its season-high fourth consecutive game of the season;
…Defeat Florida and win its fifth consecutive game this season against a team from the state of Florida. In succession, the Seminoles have defeated UCF (December 6, 96-73), North Florida (December 17, 93-77), USF (December 20, 75-62) and Stetson (December 22, 63-59) with three consecutive wins coming against UNF, USF and Stetson.